5 July, 2009

Dear Love, 2009

Category: Body,Exercise,Health,Leisure,Massage,Mood,Motivation,Queer — Moose @ 10:06 pm

I still have a lot of stuff to process from this past two weeks. Dear Love of Comrades (DLOC) was simply amazing, and precisely what I was needing. It revealed a lot of things to me which I needed to see and experience to help clarify where I am in my life and where I might want to go. But it’s going to be difficult to reconcile those with my daily practices. There are changes I will need to make, and I’m not entirely sure where I’m going to make them yet.

Two of the big things that were revealed were the extent to which I have let fear dictate so many of my actions. Fear of change and fear of my body being at the top of that list. And then, as I dwelt on those, the incredible sense of anger I felt at how I’d let that fear dictate things, and especially anger at my body and how it sets me aside from the norm (more specifically the lactose intolerance and all the problems associated with that, and the extensive history of cancer in my family and how that affects me and my behaviors). Most of this was revealed on Friday, first during the daily movement practice before breakfast (an exercise where we were visualizing our obstacles and chopping, pushing, dropping them, and then pulling toward us what we wanted in our lives), then in a large heart circle we had before and after lunch.

I knew there were emotions that were going to be revealed as part of the week – no one gets through Body Electric without some sort of emotional experience, large or small – but I don’t think I expected these particular ones. Of course, my previous experiences with Body Electric have all been ones where I felt this overwhelming joy at the connections made. I got a lot of that joy during the week as well; the big draw we did on Wednesday was the most intense, and the most intensely erotic, that I’ve experienced to date. Unlike last fall where I felt the build up of energy in me, but didn’t know what to do with it, so released it, this time I held the energy, moved it over and around my body with my hands, and claimed it as my own. It was incredible to hold that much energy and be able to channel it rather than simply releasing it into the cosmos. I did laugh again, from giggling to full body, shaking laughter. Even thinking about the experience now, a week and a half later, gives me goose bumps. There was one moment where the masseur was working on my lower body and one of the assistants came over and put his hands under my back, helping me arch up and throw my head back as I lost track of where was up and down, simply concentrating on how awesome (and erotic) the whole thing felt. I spoke first when we were done, describing the marvelous experience I’d just had, and started by repeating the word “wow” over and over again (when asked to breathe into it, the coordinator said to breathe into “Wow to the ninth power”). I don’t normally speak first for those, but it just came bubbling out this time.

Comparing that amazing experience and connection to the much more mellow and introspective weekend after Friday’s revelation feels somewhat unfair, but they’re part and parcel of the same body of experience. There is incredible joy to be found in the connections with other people, but there are barriers I’ve erected to fully giving myself over to the connections I could be making, and I need to change that.

One of the hardest things about coming back into the Bay area from up on the mountain in Guerneville was the lack of practiced movement. Each morning at DLOC you got a choice between a walk/hike or practiced movement (yoga, sufi meditation, etc.). All but one morning I did the movement exercise, all of which were wonderful (and, as written about above, cathartic in one case). Even when we were getting together during the day we were able to move and dance and stretch, experiencing the wonder of being fully present in (and thus mindful of) our bodies. Wandering around SF I kept wanting to stop and drop into yoga poses when the feeling arose, but of course even in SF there are expectations of behavior (and public sidewalks aren’t conducive to yoga). I had to content myself with stretching my arms above and to the side when I was able, and that just wasn’t the same. I suspect one thing I’ll have to do more is that type of spontaneous stretching during the day – close my office door and take a few moments to stretch out and be present in my body. It can’t hurt, and I’m lucky to have that freedom to be able to close that door and take a brief break, even in work drag.

One thing I’ve already brought back into my life is posting those things I appreciate, both to FB and to my main countfour blog (it wasn’t like there was anything else going to it!). Just noting something every day which I’m thankful for has been a good practice. It helps to focus on the positive, and to be more mindful of the experience of living.

The school set up a yahoo group for our class, at first to share rides up and otherwise coordinate travel, but also to keep in touch after the experience. Thus far it’s been pretty busy, with folks posting regularly to describe their transition back to “normalcy”. I’m glad to have this group of men, and this forum to stay in touch with them. It’s all too easy to let these experiences slip back into the background and fall back into old patterns, and I don’t want that to happen if I can avoid it. I can’t go on living as if this had never happened; I’d be miserable if I did.

15 April, 2009


Category: Finance,Massage,Running,Sleep,Swimming,Weather — Moose @ 3:23 pm

Another beautiful morning for a run. A light mist, low 50s, quite nice. Stretched to 5 miles this morning, and was doing well save for a hot spot caused by the new orthoses. Forgot to put body glide on my arches this morning, and it showed at the end. Not, I suspect, a mistake I’ll often make again.

Set myself up for a massage tomorrow. Yay. Haven’t had one in forever (last summer?), so this should be a treat.

Started tracking my cash spending again after a year or so absence from it. The lack of phone/quicken interface has been a definite hindrance there. I miss having pocket quicken to sync up the two devices. So far, though, I’ve done pretty well in remembering where I’ve been spending cash. Is good to have that awareness again.

Swim went okay this evening. First time back to the pool in 2 weeks (thank you, allergies/head cold). Still did okay, though I’m pretty darned tired this evening. Should sleep nicely. Got a pointer about arm position from a club member who often teaches swim lessons at the pool while I’m there. Was an interesting change, and it actually felt pretty good. Something new to concentrate on while training (and while racing), and I think a helpful thing.

25 March, 2009

Busy Moose/Dating on the Brain

Haven’t made time to write because I’m either getting home & being a total veg because I’m wiped out from the work day or I’m going out to see friends or maybe even a date or two. Work continues to roll along at a crazy pace. I’ve given myself a big assignment that I’ve not been able to start yet because of other fires that keep popping up. It’s needed, but finding time is a challenge.

Training is almost non-existent at this point. I’m swimming, but with the colder temps I’ve not gotten out to bike in the mornings and I’m unmotivated to haul the trainer back out. It’s not supposed to be this bloody cold in late Smarch in DC, damn it.

Much has also been on my mind about dating and the extent to which one compromises versus standing firm. After BC there are some things I consider to be vital to my well being which are not precisely the norm (Body Electric comes to mind), and I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about those things and how and when to introduce them. With a couple guys I can tell there are distict differences in relationship styles that I don’t think will ultimately be compatible. And how does one express that and not sound cliché?

23 December, 2008

Updates at the Holidays

I find it amusing that I’ve avoided holiday music all year (since I don’t really shop in malls or big retails stores), but couldn’t escape it tonight while eating at a local Chinese restaurant.

A last minute surge in knitting yesterday paid off – all the projects I needed done by the holiday are now done. Hopefully my secretary at work will enjoy the fingerless gloves I made for her. (You can see them here and here) Sadly, my next big project will be a shedir cap for a co-worker of mine who has an advanced case of uterine cancer (stage 3c). We’re not sure when she’ll start the chemo, but it won’t be long. Picked up yarn for it on Saturday, a couple of colors (she only specified “anything but pink”).

Health update: The foot is still improving slowly, but is definitely better than it has been. Still not up for running, but not nearly as painful as it had been. The PA is completely healed again, no pain whatsoever. Huzzah – no more 2 am rude awakenings.

Date from heck on Wednesday of this past week. One of those “why do I bother with this whole thing?” kind of dates. Yuck. Leering at me over dinner? Oy.

My family neglected to give me my brother’s new address, so their present (a nice check) will be late. Oh well. My parents, on the other hand, are a bit more tech-savvy, so their wish lists were updated with the addy for the RV park where they are in Florida.

Started the planning process for next year’s newbie program for the tri club. Good group of volunteers, and I think this is going to go well.

Nice night with friends planned for tomorrow, and a quiet two days after that. Hosting Kelrick and his bf Kenny at some point in there on their way up to NYC. Will be good to see Kelrick, and meet Kenny.

Work approved the two weeks off in late June/early July, so I’m set to go to Comrades this next year. Dean has thoughtfully offered his services as host in the periods around when I’m supposed to be at the retreat, so I will be spending time on either side of it in the Bay area, with lots of time to catch up with folks there.

13 August, 2008

General Update

Category: Dating,Drinks,Exercise,Friends,Home,Massage,Shopping,Stuff,Work — Moose @ 12:48 pm

Hmmm, been a bit since I updated.

Saw the podiatrist yesterday about the plantar fasciitis coming back. I had run last week and spent the rest of the day limping around in pretty severe heel pain. It’s gone down since then, but is still there in a low capacity. He cleared me to cycle and swim until my heart’s content, but no running for the next couple of months. I’m also scheduled (again) to go in for ESWT on the 3rd. Hopefully the zapping will help kill this off once and for all – I’m getting tired of sleeping in a brace, and tired of pain when I walk.

Still trying to figure out what I want to do with my exercise routine, though. Did bike this morning, and I’ll head into the gym to swim this evening. I may switch my swims to the morning, since I won’t be running then, if it’s not too crowded (the pool is hardly ever full when I swim in the evenings, and frequently it’s just me in there). There’s the advantage of having the gym 3 blocks away – I can go in the morning and then come home to breakfast & change for work after.

And, I need to do weight training. As I’ve mentioned before, weight training bores me to tears, though I do appreciate the results from its consistent application. It doesn’t help that I don’t really feel like I know what I’m doing, and don’t really want to hire a trainer, either. Eh, I’ll muddle through for now. It’s not like I don’t have enough books on tri training with weight training suggestions to pick and choose from, either.

The date Friday was fun. Too much alcohol was involved, and I actually went shirtless at the DC Eagle (though wearing an armband and gloves), a first for me I believe. He lives in Richmond, so I’m not sure if I’ll see him again any time soon, but it was still fun. I think this is the new Rule #6: “The hotter the guy online, the further away he lives.”

Work is work. I have a colleague who has worked in both the Executive and Legislative branches, as well as the private sector for the Beltway Bandit crowd, and she’s offered to chat with me some about her experiences. Haven’t taken her up on it yet, but I may do so. I’m a little bored in my job at the moment, still, and it can’t hurt to know something more about what other options there may be out there. It’s not that I don’t have plenty of work to do, I do, but I’m not terribly engaged by most of it these days.

Looking at more options for an entertainment center. The Ikea site has actually got some which might work in the space (I’ve been measuring), so I’m thinking a trip down there on Saturday or Friday might be in order to get an idea of how they look in real life, get more measurements, options, etc. And that would be a better price point than the design console I was looking at (though it’s still in the running – the shelving looks a lot better than Ikea’s options).

Had an excellent refresher massage class at PMTI with Jon on Sunday. I’d taken this once before with Doug back in 2000 or so, and it was good to get the refresher. Bonus that I got to put my hands all over Jon, too. I had an extra spot since BC dropped out, understandably, after the breakup, so it made a nice housewarming present for Jon. Appropos of that, I also signed up for the November CBE class (link NSFW). Again, it will be good to get a refresher there.

And that’s about what’s going on here.

13 July, 2008

Need The Energy

Category: Body,Friends,Health,Massage,Mood,Queer,Sleep,Triathlon — Moose @ 10:23 am

Running a little slow this morning. Last night was one of those “my brain will not shut off” kind of nights, with melatonin and exhaustion finally kicking in around 3-something. It wasn’t all a bad thing – the brain was going over some conversations I’ve had over the course of the weekend, and thinking a lot on what it is I want to be doing with myself, and with other people.

I did miss going out to take photos of the training tri this morning with the club, but I’m headed out to brunch at a friend’s house in a little bit, then a potluck birthday thing this evening over in Virginia with one of my body electric buddies.

I did decide that I’m not going to do the IM this fall. It’s not to say that I won’t ever do one, but it’s not the right time, and I think I signed up for it for the wrong reasons. I still have two races I’m currently signed up for, and I can find one or two more for the fall here locally. And perhaps this year I won’t end the season completely burnt out and unmotivated to do off-season fitness maintenance.

I also think I’m going to attend the local Celebrate the Body Erotic course in November. I need the refresher, and I’d like to go back to an earlier plan of mine, to attend one of the week-long intensives next summer. I also need the renewal of my ties to this particular community. I’ve been disengaged from the energies I need for long enough now, it’s time to get them back.

27 November, 2006

Fighting it off

Category: Health,Massage,Swimming,Work — Moose @ 10:44 pm

I’m fighting off a head cold at the moment. Stayed over at MG’s place on Saturday and he had a fan going to keep the air circulating, and I temporarily forgot that fan blowing across Moose’s face = dry nose = head cold susceptibility. You’d think with the AC drama over the summer I’d remember that, but no. My own fault, but still annoying. Lotsa vitamin C & B being consumed (yay for Emergen-C) at the moment.

Tonight was a non-food night of shopping at the grocery store. Needed those lovely home staples of bleach, toilet paper, etc., so grabbed the requisite coupons and dragged myself up for it. Didn’t get home early enough to do whites (for which I needed the aforementioned bleach), but I can do that later this week. Did get in a swim after work, drill work this time, and felt good doing it and after. The bike ride home tends to feel a tad chilly, even after I dry off thoroughly, but it’s short enough not to be a hassle.

Oh, and I managed to lose my work badge. Which isn’t such a big deal, except that the policy of the security people is to drive you batty by punishing you for being a dork make you wait ten working days to get a new badge, even though the technology exists to print out a new one on the spot (as well as cancelling the old one). So, metal detector city for me for the next two weeks.  Thankfully that’s pretty easy when I bike in since everything but my keys (metal-wise) is already in my bag from the commute in. So once I come back from visiting my family over the weekend of the 8th I’ll be re-badged.

Did a massage exchange yesterday with a gentleman whom I’ve exchanged massages with before (for those unfamiliar, it’s simply a “you massage me, I massage you” arrangement). He could use some technique pointers, but overall is pretty good. Haven’t done one of those in ages, so was nice to get a little body work done.

And now, time to crash to help sleep off the cold.

19 July, 2006

Random Wednesday Update

Category: Health,Massage,Relationships,Sleep — Moose @ 8:57 am

I want to write, but I’m drawing a blank.

Got a nice compliment from a lovely fella the other day. Just wrote him back to thank him this morning, my usual tardy self when it comes to follow up. Also been missing on emails to a few other folks.

Even though I rearranged the bedroom I’m still, somehow, getting air blowing past my face. I’m just going to have to crank the AC to get the temps really low and then turn it off to sleep. Or perhaps redirect the air at the windows or something. I just can’t take the dry sinuses any more, and I really, really want to breathe without chemical help again. Grrr. Major design flaw of the unit, as far as I’m concerned.

Did a massage exchange last night, which was nice. Very chatty guy, which was sometimes fun, sometimes distracting. But overall it was a good experience.

Have a visitor coming in for the weekend, getting here late tomorrow evening. Going to do some touristy things, which is always fun with folks who don’t live here. I enjoy playing tour guide in my chosen city, so this’ll be a nice break from the norm.

7 December, 2005

Catching up

Category: Health,Law,Massage,Relationships,Sleep,Stuff,Triathlon — Moose @ 12:36 am

Much goings on since the last post, and yet it feels like I don’t have a ton to report, either.

I did indeed wipe out my credit card debt, and the installments have started on the small loan I took out to pay them all off. I’m waiting until the statements cycle in the next week or two to make the final interest payments, and then that part of the debt is retired. Yes, it’s just a restructuring of the debt, but one that will reduce the time and overall cost considerably, so I’m pleased.

I also took out enough to purchase the tri bike I wanted to get. Two pictures, one from the official web site, one from my camera phone:

Specialized Transition Elite - Official Web Photo

Specialized Transition Elite - My Baby

Am most pleased with the purchase thus far. I also picked up an indoor trainer the following day, a fluid trainer, so I can ride the beastie inside when I’m too lazy to take my ass outdoors it’s too nasty outside to ride there. The aero bars will definitely take some getting used to – the ride home from the shop, even using the Metro, was spent entirely on the outer bars where the brakes were, but then again, I was riding on city streets, not out on open road with no cars. Glad I got it now, though, so I have time to practice on it well before the race in June.

Training otherwise is going well. I’m making most of the planned training sessions, with the exception of the bike ones last week (for obvious reasons – no bike yet!). The double training days on Tu/Th are going pretty well, as is the planned day off on Wednesday. I’m glad to have that rest built into the middle of the week, it definitely helps break up the routine and give me time to remember that I used to have a life outside of training, as well as letting me do errands like, oh, getting my hair cut.

In not so happy news, I broke up with K. It’s a complicated story, and I don’t want to go into a lot of details here, but I’m not seeing him any more.

Work is getting busier by the day, and I’m not keeping up with it, much to my annoyance. I almost suspect we’re getting enough other stuff going on in my area to justify another 1/2 a body (with the other 1/2 to be other “general law” stuff), or even a full body to handle the loan stuff I’m learning now. What a mess that is. Sat through some training today on it and I have to say, I’m almost wishing I’d done the joint JD/MBA degree rather than the JD/MA – the financing stuff would be very useful right about now.

Tired a lot of late from the training. A good tired, but still tired. Oh, and I gave up caffeine the week of Thanksgiving again. Had a decaf that weekend, and some sips of tea one lunch, but otherwise have steered clear of it. Honestly, it’s been a lot easier to dump this time than the original trip back in 2000-2001. Haven’t really felt the need for the stuff, despite the tiredness from the training, and my continuing trips down to the cafeteria in the morning before work (a ritual I do with one of the other new attorneys – used to get coffee together, now she gets coffee and I occasionally get a bagel). Glad I did it, and I look forward to having it completely out of my system again in another couple of months.

No more bites to report, though I find myself increasingly irritated at the management of the building for their (to my mind) poor business decisions in who they’re renting to. They’ve done nothing about the guys next door, only spraying when I fuss about the bugs returning. I had to pound on the wall on Sunday when I got home to get them to turn their music down (like I want to hear their music loudly and clearly through a concrete wall), and while they had the good sense to turn it down (had they not, security would have been called), it was still an incredible annoyance on an otherwise okay day. I so look forward to getting away from them and their unwanted little guests (both the two- and multi-legged varieties).

I need to arrange for a good full body massage sometime soon. It’s funny, I have so many friends who are professional massage therapists now that my problem is deciding which therapist to use for any given issue. But some work on the back/shoulders and legs is needed and soon.

28 September, 2005

Better Crazy Couch

Category: Law,Massage,Running — Moose @ 11:34 pm

Better run this morning than Monday. Heart rate stayed more in line with the norm (though that’s too high, thank you sudafed, by which I mean thank you cats for causing such allergies that I need to take sudafed all the time now), and it felt better than Monday’s inaugural run.

Crazy days at work, with crazy questions left and right. Mostly staying above water now, but will be very happy to see the fiscal year close and the new one begin, even if Congress hasn’t gotten off their collective asses and given us a real budget yet. Off tomorrow for a dental appointment, one that was originally scheduled for last week but which had to be put off because I had to be at a meeting Thursday morning that was absolute BS and at which I really was not needed.

Saw K tonight, watched the OC and he was a good sport about me making fun of the characters (“C’mon, Marissa, eat a fucking sandwich!”). Gave him a massage afterward, which was fun for both of us. Was relaxing all around.

Richard arrived home from NYC this evening as well and he liked the new living room arrangement that Mike and I foisted off on the room over the weekend. We moved a couch around to the outside wall to open up the inner space, and cocked everything at a slight angle. It helps. And I also let Richard know this evening that despite my earlier considerations I did not want to get a new couch – I see little point in spending almost $900 on a new couch when we can spend much, much less to simply replace the mattress on the one futon frame that’s still in excellent shape (it just has a mattress that sucks gorilla butt).

Which I think was inspired by my current choice of reading, Affluenza (2nd edition). Definitely making me reconsider some of my choices, and some of my habits. Hopefully for the better.